Brighton is one of the most lauded teams in recent European football. There are several reasons for this. One is the great form with which they are being regarded as a benchmark, first under Roberto de Zerbi and then Graham Potter. The other is their acclaimed recruitment and management model, characterised by the acquisition of players from secondary leagues in Europe, taking risks and getting it right in the vast majority of cases, with the aim of betting on them and increasing their value in order to be able to sell them for much more money.
Brighton’s particularity is that it is their style of recruitment that they look outside of England and in leagues far removed in economic potential. It is a club that takes risks even though it belongs to a Championship where status and position can be lost quickly, because of the extraordinary competitiveness of the Championship’s middle class. It rarely acquires talent from the Premier League or secondary leagues in England, and instead looks for talent in leagues such as the Danish, Swedish, Polish, Argentinian, Dutch and Belgian leagues. That’s why we’ve used league filters more suited to Brighton’s potential spend on a potential replacement for Alexis Mac Allister, one of the brightest players in the squad and one for whom they are likely to get a large transfer fee.
The Argentine is usually placed as a ‘number 6’ midfielder, alongside Moises Caicedo or Pascal Gross, although he has also been a playmaker ahead of Caicedo or Gross, but always involved in the build up, with very good mobility and creativity, as we also saw during the World Cup. Beyond the possible growth of Gilmour or Buonanotte, Brighton, even more so if Moises Caicedo leaves, will need a profile in midfield.
- Enzo Le Fee is a very interesting option for conditions and similarity, youth and market opportunity. His contract expires in 2024 and the player has already communicated his intention to leave. Midfielder with great dribbling, ability to generate chances and a lot of ball control in the first passes, next to the midfielder.
- A second option, the most expensive, is Orkun Kokcu, from Feyenoord, a 22 year old player very creative in one on one and carrying the ball, characteristics more typical of the playmaker or winger, but who plays as a midfielder and escapes very well from the pressure of the opponent, traits very conducive to the style of play developed by Roberto de Zerbi. He may well be a high investment, but his youth and potential could help Brighton cushion the departure of Alexis and continue to push for top positions in the Premier League.
- A very interesting free option, coveted by other European clubs such as Borussia Dortmund is Daichi Kamada, midfielder of Eintracht Frankfurt. Another player with very good technical and physical conditions to attack big spaces after building in his own half in the so-called De Zerbi ball. A good assist and goal scorer, he is one of the most decisive midfielders in the Bundesliga in terms of goals scored.
- Martin Baturina is perhaps Dinamo Zagreb’s most exciting young talent at the moment. With the ’10’ on his back, Baturina stands out for his skill, ability to drive and combine with his team-mates. Great ball control, creative in the final pass and with great goal scoring ability, demonstrated in this last season. He is only 20 years old and would be a very interesting move within the recruitment model of the English team.
- The cheapest but also very interesting option is that of Odin Thiago Holm, a 21-year-old midfielder from Vaalerenga, who is probably already under the control of Brighton’s technical secretariat. Great technical ability in a multitude of individual actions and with very good agility. Perhaps he could represent a more risky profile due to the big difference in level between leagues, but very coherent in terms of quality and the origin of Brighton’s signings.
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